It’s not a long story, it’s a short story for a change.
I took this photo with a really old medium format camera which involves lugging a large tripod to rest it on, it’s far too big to just hold in my hand. Most of the photos take at least 10 to 20 seconds to expose. This chap passed me by when I was setting everything up and then seemed to disappear around the corner. By the time I had actually pressed the button on the camera I didn’t feel the need to look up, when you have already spent 10 minutes getting everything right there really is no need for one last look, so I click the button and wait for the second click to tell me the photo has been taken. As I am waiting I do look up and see this fella strolling [with intent] right in the centre of my shot. I cursed and then patiently waited until he was gone again. I then took exactly the same photo but obviously without the annoying intruder this time.
A week later I’m in the darkroom printing enlargements and I happen to print the wrong photo, it is this one you are looking at now. I leave it to one side to dry out a bit and then work on the print without him in it. When I actually compared the two photos I have to admit I much prefer this one, the other one is fine but quite simply, it’s lacking the man.
This is one of those great instances when you think you have a great eye for photographs and a simple mistake rubbishes everything you think you know. This is something I love about photography, experts can try and teach you so much but mistakes tend to teach you so much more.
I feel I should have chased after the chap so I could put a name on him.
You can purchase prints or postcards of this photo from as little as €2.50 by clicking this link.
(Comments and opinions are greatly appreciated, please feel free to let me know what you think)